Do you run a profitable Facebook group or do you run a business?

This is going to be... controversial to say the least. 

There are an increasing number of people who leverage only their Facebook profiles and a group to sell. That's it. 

And the strategies that they teach to their clients consist of posting in Facebook groups, starting their own, and being on social media.

That's it.

That, honey, is not a business that's a profitable Facebook group

I can also talk openly about this because I've made these mistakes so I know how they've damaged the long-term health of my business, and I'm bringing this information to you because if other coaches were honest about what's happening in the backend of their business and the problems they're encountering... you'd never buy from them again.

Facebook group vs. a business

Business is actually pretty simple, overall. Businesses require:

  1. A proprietary product or service

  2. A place to lay out their method/explain their product/give people details about their service that you own

  3. A payment system for people to pay you

  4. Lead generation system

That's it, a business is those four things. A Facebook group/Facebook groups/Facebook profiles are lead generation sources. That's it.

A Facebook group is not a proprietary product or service because Facebook owns Facebook. You wish you owned Facebook... but you don't.

Especially in the coaching industry, there's this belief that you "don't need a website to make money." And it's true... you don't.

I can sell my Canada Goose jacket in a Facebook group and make money.

But to have a business, you need a website or a storefront. Because in the event that you get audited or that a complaint is filed against you with the authorities for fraud or misrepresentation or any of the other things that can happen when you run a business, you have to have something to show them.

That isn't scarcity mindset, that's smart business.

If all you're doing is teaching people how to post in Facebook groups and have their own Facebook group... there's nothing proprietary about that. Facebook could change its rules tomorrow where the only place you're allowed to advertise your services is through Facebook ads and you'd be "out of business." 

The other problem with leveraging Facebook/Instagram for sales

With Facebook and Instagram in particular, you don't control the visibility of your content. Algorithms change all the time and if you produce a piece of content that is less than "hot" compared to your usual engagement, or if you do anything that these places don't like, they can limit your reach in the algorithm and it can take weeks to get back to the same level of visibility that you were at before.

That means that mid-launch, if you put a post out that doesn't get the same amount of engagement to your four-week group program about how to market your coaching program in Facebook groups (ew), you'll be dinged in the algorithm and only your "superfans" are likely to see your content, but it won't get pushed out to more of your friends/followers.

Any business that is reliant upon external factors to help it control its income is not a business... it's a hobby masquerading as a business.

Your business needs predictability, stability, and scalability in order to grow. Organic social media can give you none of those things.

The professional credibility that you need to establish for larger opportunities needs to be built sooner, rather than later.

This is what I hinted at above when I mentioned that you'd never buy from coaches again if you knew the sh!t show going on behind the scenes in their business.

If you want to pursue a traditional publishing deal, speak on larger stages, collaborate with major influencers, etc. you need to have a definitive body of work that points to your expertise. Where you can say "here... this is what I think about xyz, this is where people follow me, and this is how they engage with me." 

Social media followers aren't it. Unless someone is a celebrity (in film, movies, etc.), you're not going to be able to get away with sending someone a link to your Facebook group where all your posts are archived or your Facebook profile as valid proof in your marketing plan for your book deal.

It just won't happen. I dare you to find any major publisher, from Hay House to Penguin to Simon and Schuster where their experts don't have a website, PR under their belt, and an established e-mail list and chain of authority that establishes them as an expert.

The only examples are Youtubers and celebrities... and even then, their books get one page websites at the minimum.

The press logos are how you establish your expertise for the large stages and the book deals. The speaker website gets you booked. It's what gets you consulting gigs. It's what allows you to work with the big wigs.

Nobody worth knowing about going to take you seriously as a business owner if you don't have the pieces in place that validate you as a business owner.

Why I made these mistakes for so long

I knew better, so why did I make these mistakes for so long?

For the same reason that you are:

  • Taking the easy way out is the human way

  • I got swept up in industry bullshit and allowed myself to think that that was a business

  • Everyone else was doing it

Let me tell you, greatness never comes from the majority... it is the exceptional who truly make change.

I know you know that you're exceptional, so stop letting yourself be duped and step into your freaking power already and make decisions like a CEO.

be.ceoErika AshleyComment